Winnipeg Richardson International Airport launches sensory support kits

November 30, 2023

Categories: At YWG

Winnipeg Airports Authority is dedicated to finding ways to enhance accessibility at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport. To better support the needs of our diverse community, free sensory support kits are now available for travellers passing through YWG. These kits are modelled off the Autism Canada kits and are filled with tactile and sensory items that can be comforting to neurodivergent individuals. 
 
“As an ongoing commitment to accessibility, we’re happy to provide our passengers with a variety of programs to help provide a positive airport experience for everyone,” said Julie Chapko, Accessibility and Operations Support Specialist at YWG. “The sensory support kits, the Passenger Rehearsal Program and the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Lanyards all work together to bring us closer to our goal.” 


Travellers can pick up a sensory support kit at the Information Booth on the Arrivals Level of the terminal. 

Items such as fidget spinners, squeeze balls, and snuggly stuffed toys encourage self-soothing, and sunglasses or ear covers can ease sensory overload. This can help those who may need some extra support when travelling to remain calm in stressful situations or overstimulating environments.  
 
This additional service, paired with the ongoing work of the mYWG Accessibility Committee, is part of our commitment to shape a more welcoming and inclusive environment for all at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport. Over the past year, YWG has also introduced Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Lanyards, a globally recognized program to help people with invisible disabilities discreetly indicate they may need more help when travelling, and digital accessibility kiosks for travellers with a disability or reduced mobility to request curbside assistance.  
 
The mYWG Accessibility Committee greatly values community feedback. If you have any questions or comments related to accessibility at Winnipeg Richardson International Airport, please email accessibility@waa.ca. The committee meets regularly to review and recommend changes to policies, practices, and procedures related to accessibility.  
 
Passengers with mobility or accessibility assistance requests should contact their airline at least 48 hours ahead of their flight to notify them of their needs and make arrangements. 

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